With 2021 underway, we’re seeing a lot of trends in web development and design. Some trends, like voice, are still relatively new, while others are still going strong from previous years.
Here are six web trends to try this year.
1. Voice User Interface (VUI)
Voice technology is seeing rapid growth thanks to Voice User Interfaces (VUI). We’re now seeing a new trend where voice controls can be used to offer a similar experience on websites that we have with Google Home, Siri or Alexa.
This year, we’ll see an even bigger integration of voice commands in web interfaces, web design layouts and apps.
Because voice command technology is still not perfected, designers and developers will need to ensure that their voice elements are tested for quality and performance. A usability testing service, like QAwerk, can help ensure that the voice features on your site and applications are working as intended.
2. Dark Mode
Dark Mode exploded in popularity in 2019 after Google launched the mode in many of its apps, including YouTube and Chrome. The trend is expected to continue well into 2021.
Why should web designers care about Dark Mode? Because Google Chrome and many other web browsers have a built-in Dark Mode, and websites can automatically switch to that mode if the user has it enabled.
The user’s experience is always the top priority, so catering to their Dark Mode preference will create a more positive experience. Also, Chrome has a Night Eye feature that will turn all websites dark whether they’re optimized for it or not.
Creating a design plan for Dark Mode will ensure that your site looks great rather than leaving it up to chance.
Minimalism isn’t necessarily a new trend, but it’s one that’s quickly becoming the standard. Users don’t want to see cluttered pages with distracting elements.
The goal is to create a clear and pleasant user experience. Simple, minimalist designs are the answer. They make extensive use of white space, and no one element is distracting.
The minimalism trend will continue well into 2021.
4. Bold Colors
When most people think of minimalist design, they think of flat, boring colors and layouts. But this trend is changing.
In 2021, we’re seeing a lot of online stores and brands using bright, bold colors. These colors transform the minimalist designs we’ve grown used to and offer more visual appeal.
5. Mobile First
Mobile isn’t a new trend, and it won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. More than half of the global Internet traffic now comes from mobile devices. Designers and developers need to be thinking in terms of mobile-first – not second.
Think about how visitors are using your website on mobile.
- Have you made your website search voice-friendly?
- Have you made it easy to offer personalized product recommendations on mobile?
- Is your mobile checkout process seamless?
Designers and developers need to be focused on mobile in 2021 and beyond. If you’re not sure how your current site fits in, you can use Google’s mobile-friendly test to see which elements aren’t working properly on mobile.
6. AI and Chatbots
Artificial intelligence (AI) and chatbots have transformed online customer service. By 2021, a quarter of customer service and support operations are expected to use chatbot technology. That’s up from less than 2% three years ago.
People expect to be able to contact and interact with a brand 24/7. Chatbots can answer these questions and even complete some actions, like booking appointments.
While chatbots are still limited in some ways, they satisfy the need for instant gratification and can help answer many customer questions.
Prepare for the Future
Web trends come and go, but some become the foundation of future design and development. Many of these trends, like voice, mobile and AI, will likely become a part of that foundation.
Focusing on these trends now, while they’re still emerging, will help you stay ahead of the curve and prepare for the future. Many of these trends can be implemented relatively quickly and easily, so there’s no reason to wait.